Seattle Rock Orchestra (SRO) was born out of the desire to marry the unabashed performance energy of rock’n’roll with the broader palette of musical nuances treasured in classical music. Founded by bassist & composer Scott Teske, SRO started modestly in 2008, performing their first show as a 13-piece string orchestra. As word of the ensemble and its mission spread, the size of the group and the profile of the performances matured rapidly, leading within months to high-profile collaborations with Jeremy Enigk, Damien Jurado, Jesse Sykes and Rosie Thomas.
2009 brought the orchestra to center stage with its sold out re-imagining of Arcade Fire’s debut album Funeral, followed by a move to the Moore Theatre for their 2010-2011 season and tributes to David Bowie, The Beach Boys, Radiohead and Queen, as well as performances at Sasquatch Music Festival in both 2010 and 2011. SRO continued to develop its reputation for high quality, high energy shows over its next few seasons with tributes to The Beatles, Stevie Wonder, Led Zeppelin, Michael Jackson, Pink Floyd, The Police, Muse, Beck and The Smashing Pumpkins, as well as high profile collaborations with the likes of Elvis Costello, Macklemore, DeVotchKa, Allen Stone, The Lonely Forest, Sir Mix-a-Lot, and Big Star’s Third (feat. members of The Posies, R.E.M., Nada Surf & Pearl Jam).
In 2012 SRO launched the Seattle Rock Orchestra Summer Intensive, a week long summer day camp for middle & high school musicians. In 2012 also SRO contributed strings to the song Neon Cathedral on Mackelmore’s 2012 album The Heist, and released its own debut EP in 2013 featuring songs by Radiohead, The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Stevie Wonder and Beck.
2014 saw another expansion of the organization with the addition two more ensembles: Seattle Rock Orchestra Quintet, SRO’s preminent chamber ensemble, as well Seattle Rock Orchestra Social Club, a new community orchestra designed to give even more performance opportunities to Seattle’s thriving culture of adult amatuer orchestral musicians.
Now a professional 50+ piece orchestra with strings, woodwinds, brass, percussion and a rotating cast of guest vocalists, SRO is embarking on its sixth full season of programming